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tv   Washington Journal  CSPAN  August 17, 2014 7:30am-9:31am EDT

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should shock us. it should keep us up at night. from 88,000 to 56,000 in just 10 years. what are we going to do, america? congress is screwed. this is literally, objectively the worst congress ever." the whole story is available online. marvin, atlantic beach. morning, good morning. i wanted to make a few comments. i am 46 years old and am african-american. in my lifetime i have stopped by the police, spread across my car. only because i was educated by i run into these situations i know, hands down, do not do anything, do not go for your wallet, do not do anything. just listen and complied. with that said, there is a regards toh
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african-american males. think about this -- several months ago clive and bundy on his ranch, all of these militia guys ran down there and had assault rifles pointed at the police. nothing was said. can you imagine if it was the reverse with african pointing assault rifles at the police? this how often has occurred to you personally in your situation? caller: and my lifetime, three times. host: how was it resolved? caller: they check my license, told me i did not need to be in my neighborhood -- that neighborhood. i was simply visiting a friend. compliant,ause i was you know, it didn't reach for anything. -- educateded by about the police at the young age. my father always had these conversations with me. it's crazy, i find myself having
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the same conversations with my young 18-year-old. it gets to a point where i don't that african-american men are angry, i think they just have an edge to them because generation after generation they have to have these conversations with their young sons. i don't know if our white counterparts of these count -- have these conversations. i don't know. but in the black community if you have an african-american male son, you sit down and you have this conversation with them before you wind up with a dead son. what was your son's reaction? caller: he shook his head and told me he knows. he is a good kid. phenomenal athlete. but i have to have these conversations with him. i am tired because it is the same conversation that my dear old 86-year-old dad had with me. marvin, thank you for the
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call. where's he going to college, by the way? caller: three different colleges. michigan state, maryland eastern shore, and he has been contacted by tennessee state. host: all good schools. caller: definitely. i am hopeful and praying. host: thank you. james is next in louisiana. i hope you will give me some time. i am one of the angry black african-american women. this has been going on for 200 years. we are angry. we are tired. our kids are being slaughtered in the street probably every 28 hours. this has been going on for 200 years. the white kids are not being slaughtered. they are not going through what our kids are going through. if this was happening to white kids, these white americans who have all of these guns that they love, don't you think that they
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would be out there killing everybody? then they want to turn around and tell us how we should respond to something. as far as the robbery on the video, that was not a robbery, that were shoplifting. they want to portray us in the worst light that they can. there the police down would have come out and done the right thing, none of this would have happened. they are always trying to tell us how we should behave. america.uilt up we have borne your children. you have done so many terrible things to us and then we -- you tell us that we don't have a right to feel how we feel? ooh are a liar and the truth is not in you. host: this is from stella -- from "
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the washington post," "how ferguson became a firestorm so fast." independent line? yourrned on the volume on set, that will eliminate the echo. good morning to you. caller: good morning. how are you all? host: fine, thank you. go ahead. caller: when the savior came, he was not black or white, it was written in black-and-white. it was a spiritual race. when he created the clouds and blue the spirit in, it was, you know, the truth. the governors on all seven continents, you know, if you learned the truth and knew the truth, it is a spiritual race. it has nothing to do with white and black. one black-and-white? read it in a book. it is written. black words on white paper by
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red blood. if you all would execute the law orordingly and quit electing anointing all of these false ones for your knowledge, maybe we would get somewhere and return back to paradise. one is one's word. carolina, thank you for the call. dorothy is next from even, ohio. good morning. caller: hi. i am a black woman and an angry black woman. i will tell you about something that happened to me. it kind of reminded me of the woman that called when she was jogging. i worked at a big insurance company for almost 30 years. i was responsible, a coach at that time, i was responsible for the mail.
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i was pulling a shift for another girl and another department because she was on vacation. i had to be there at 6:00 to meet the mail carrier. he was a white carrier. i let him in. we went to her job at that time of the morning, and you had to have some type of the vet -- device in case something goes on to the you can notify the police, ok? i had my hands holding a bunch of stuff. i took the device that triggered the police and it went off. i did not know the device had gone off. when it came to my attention i might have triggered the device, i called the police department to let them know that everything was ok. me they had to come out because i could have been coerced. thecarrier brought in
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facts. they all jumped out, with guns, and pointed. not at the carrier, but at me. host: comedy were there? caller: four of them. they all had guns pointed at me. i explained my job to them and everything. they asked me for id. i show them id. they said -- rudy you work here. questions were directed to me. now, we were in there, same as me and the other guys bringing the mail in, you're going to ask a lady for id but not ask the carrier? they never once asked him anything. one of the officers had to tell ie other officer how much id had to show. then they ran a background check on me at work. i have been there for 30 years of that work. in thisgs that they do
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society with black people? especially young black men? my son was almost killed in 1998 for no reason at all. he never had a camp -- never had a criminal record. a computer analyst and everything. it's like the other caller said, we have to constantly tell our down, notep your head join, just do this, and still there's no guarantee you won't get shot, but you got to do the right thing, tell them the right thing, there is still no guarantee. when did this take place? recently? caller: this happened about seven years ago. you were an employee there? i am retireder: now. my manager had to go and tell them -- what is this little one going to take out of fear? this is no way to react.
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pulling a gun? coming in to see that the situation is in hand, but i appreciate that from my manager. host: we appreciate the call and comment. a story from "the new york post ." the now former host of "meet the press," "david gregory was paid 4 million dollars to leave nbc. he also signed a contract not to speak out against the network, according to sources who told page six. he moderated the show for the past six years and was unceremoniously dumped from the program on thursday after dismal ratings and months of speculation. a source said his contract extended into next year, so he was paid an extra fee to ensure his silence. that silence." "worst week in washington lowe's
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quote this week goes to gregory. ken, race relations today, good morning. caller: good morning. i host a radio show here in cincinnati. the problem i see is we need to deal with the issue of reparations. the reason i say that, that is the elephant in the room, the unsolved issue of america's original sin. from 1865 to 1964, the jim crow of federal tax exempt status for african-americans is what it should be. i wrote a book about it called economic revolution, it's on i think that that is what is really at the crux of all of this. as far as personal race relations, i think that things go along great individually, but as a nation that is one issue we
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have yet to deal with. dealing with reparations to the tax code is one way to do it. thank you for the call. this morning, "jails with the revolving doors." this is from "the chicago tribune." chicago bulls showing voters disapproving of the job performance by the mayor by a two to one ratio. police is look for "ignitingin missouri, the debate of how much police officers should have. the story has been getting a lot of attention in d.c. and in the commonwealth of virginia. "taking the stand in his own defense, "expected to be a six-week criminal trial into the governor and former state first lady." duane is joining us from
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florida. good morning. maker: i just wanted to some comments. i just heard the last lady from ohio, dorothy. that was a horrible situation. her, they should id everyone and not isolate and single out certain people, but the main thing i want to comment on is what is going on in ferguson, people have got to realize that that investigation took a while for the police officers named to come out, but then you have people tweeting phone numbers and addresses of other policemen. i saw one where one was singled out, and incorrect policemen, a security guard, that causes more riding andthe breaking into the stores, those store owners, property owners, landowners, had nothing to do with it. protesting, giving them the opportunity to loot, this should not be open entry for
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citizens to loot because of this one incident. that ifave to realize you commit crimes against people that had nothing to do with it, it's not fair. i saw this on c-span about one month ago, sports and racism in america. was a panel of retired players. people should go online and look for that video, it was in dallas with retired professional athletes with a panel of all blacks. particularly with what michael that isid in response, a good video to look at and i hope that everyone listening goes on and watches that video. you. thank a good chance for us to promote our free video library, on our website at to give you a sense of the crowd, pope francis the first continues his asian tour,
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unsettling protestants in south korea according to "the new york times." greg, independent line, good morning. host: good morning. i have been a viewer since the debut of c-span. one of the great shows you are having today was certainly suggest that the topic continues in some other form of questions when it comes to the kind of race relations in what is going on in america. i happen to agree with both of the women who shared their andrience today, the jogger the woman who shared her experience out of ohio. what still appears to be to me thekind of insensitivity to experiences that african-americans have experienced in america. i will be brief, i know you're short on time, but the majority aremericans, whether they
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anglo-saxons, or even the immigrants that come into this country, they have forgotten about the experience -- the slavery, the laws that prevented african-americans from being a part of america when it came to education? when it came to redaction of the laws or even jobs in this country. we are talking about the radio to talk abouted repatriation, which i think is not going to happen, but it just goes to show the inner deep or whateverhatred other adjectives you want to share from other people towards african-americans. like the lady said, we have not done anything except make this country stronger, healthier, bigger, richer, and we have not been the beneficiaries. i say this quickly again, the government was even complicit in
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keeping african-americans from this particular dream. from other ethnic groups, the iris, the italians. african-americans want the same thing. when you hear about being lazy and stupid and that kind of thing, just think about what we are still dealing with when those things change for groups like ours. i appreciate c-span, steve. host: thank you for being a loyal viewer and please keep watching us, or listening to us on the radio. -- you can continue the conversation on our twitter page. coming up at 10:00 eastern time, ."ewsmakers our guest is the head of "emily's list." as part of the conversation, she talked about poor 214 and the role there in the midterm elections.
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[video clip] gains,ne has made although there is some movement on her side right now, but really what is happening just started. it is a huge state, which i don't have to tell anybody. lots of media markets, folks just got up on television and are just really now having a much broader conversation with the voters. lastwe have seen in the week or so since wendy davis went on television with a very hard-hitting ad that has put for abbott on the defense in lack of response supporting rape issues, this is a serious issue. women will be shocked in texas. -- who the conversation is greg abbott? people are just figuring out who he is.
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he is incredibly conservative with the backwards view of where the state should go. this race is going to get closer as we get closer to the election. i'm not saying it is easy. i'm not blind to the fact that we are dealing with race in texas -- rape in texas, but this is far from over, obviously just getting started. the texas governor's race with wendy davis, airing at 10:00 eastern time on c-span and c-span radio. , all this at the top week we're focusing on lbj's great society program. as we talk about the great society and the war on poverty, later the discussion will continue on the president's push for the voting rights act and recent supreme court decisions striking down part of that law as "washington journal" continues on this sunday
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morning, august 17. we are back in a moment. ♪ >> on c-span, monday, a debate on genetically modified food. tuesday, and issues spotlight on the general motors safety recall. and we hear from a cancer biologist. thursday we will look at the issue of climate change. friday night we will visit important sites in the history of the civil rights movement. monday, "booktv," in prime time.
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tuesday night at 8:00, "afterwards." wednesday, the authors of the second machine age talk about how new technology will fundamentally change everyday life. thursday night, a discussion on the future of politics with l from.hrlich and tv," anican history entire work -- entire week on "the civil war. --." the civilre week on war. wednesday night, the anniversary of the union defeat at the battle of the crater. thursday, the capture of atlanta and general sherman's march to the sea. friday, the hollywood per trail of slavery. i know your schedule one week in advance and let us know about the programs you're watching and what you think. and call us, or e-mail.
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the c-span conversation, like us on facebook, follow us on twitter. washington journal continues. host: this week we are focusing on the lbj great society program. discussed the project we have robert woodson. ande have michael lind robert woodson. gentlemen, thank you for being with us. as you look back at where we were and where we are, how are we doing in the country? some of us are doing well, others are not. america is still divided. not so much by race as by class. as a veteran of the civil rights movement, i think that many of the problems that we confronted met by strong resistance in the black
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community. we had institutions, our families were strong. ratherl 1963, 80 2 -- 85% of black families had a man and woman raising children. elderly people were not afraid of their grandchildren. that has all changed. it is interesting, in the face of tremendous gains in terms of race relations, many low income communities, particularly black communities, there has been a massive deterioration. even though we spent $15 trillion on the war on poverty, i think that that movement has exacerbated some of the problems it intended to cure. host: at the center of this is the economy and these economic situations these families are facing. why is there still such as -- still such a disparity today? in the last 50 years these disparities have
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shrunk. remember, this was an apartheid society. the problems of the great society and the war on poverty, are what you are seeing african-american incomes converging more towards non-hispanic white incomes, but nevertheless the gap remains. looking at poverty, for example, the official statistic is 20%. for than 30 percent african-americans and latinos. the problem is -- the federal government has been fairly successful at income maintenance programs and income supports, where you're either sending money to people, like social security checks, or providing income benefits like food stamps. as a result, according to supplemental measures, poverty has been cut in half. to about 15% today. the problem is, as has been written about, when it comes to
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hard-core behavioral, community, and structural problems, the federal government's programs are too broad and vague. you need kind of a personal touch. that could be local communities, that could be nonprofits. the federal government is very good at writing checks and providing non-cash benefits, but it needs to look -- work with local communities. on one point,w-up michael, among your books you wrote about the southern takeover of american politics and george w. bush. president bush put in place a lot of faith based remedies to deal with these issues. however they work? -- how have they work? -- worked? critical,y have been but in general there is a bipartisan consensus in favor of having religious groups in these
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organizations working with the government -- this goes back to the 1960's. if you look at the present situation as a result of the great recession, this was the greatest economic crisis since the great depression. even before that, if you look at the jobless -- so-called jobless , weveries of 2001 and 2002 have seen that poverty tends to go down when the economy is booming. when the economy is flat or contracting, it obviously goes up again. aboutof the discussion is the safety net, but what is really broken, if you look at the rise of the working poor, for example, are high wage jobs with benefits. about 44% of the jobs created since the great recession began have been low-paying jobs, even though a greater majority of the middle income and high wage jobs
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were destroyed. there are two questions. one, what is the adequacy of the safety net? the other -- what are the jobs of the future? do they pay enough to support a family? host: robert, you're the author of a book in paperback called "the triumph of joseph." today's communing leaders reviving neighborhoods. guest: we have been silent on the issue of poverty for five years and i am delighted that paul ryan stepped forward to begin to start this dialogue, but i think it is important when discussing poverty than we realize that not all people are poorer for the same reasons. i have identified four categories of poor people. category one, their broken. a crisis in their family, the death of a significant breadwinner, they just need help. there is a second category of people where their character is
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intact, but there are perverse incentives for being on welfare groups. the third category is people disabled physically and mentally. the fourth category troubles most of us, people being poor because of the chances and choices that they make. there's is a crisis of character and behavior. other people who, if you just give money to them, it will injure them with the helping hand. they need intervention. the problem is that people on the left tend to look at the poor like they are category one and on the right as if they are category four and we miss each other. i think it is important to realize the quality of life, the discussion of quality of life, values and morality, are as important as talking about income and incentives. in terms me put this of numbers. you mentioned congressman paul ryan. "50 years and a great amount of
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economic expansion later, the american society is more prosperous, but despite $16 trillion spent in the last five decades to put an end to poverty, the poverty rate in 2014 is little changed from when lbj issued his declaration 50 years ago. -- 50 years ago." guest: absolutely. what we need to do, what we have to do -- we need more innovation . more and newer ways of helping the poor. it should not be to maintain people in poverty, the challenge is -- what is the highway out of poverty? untilnnot discuss that you begin to talk about the kind of barriers that the existing system imposes on people. so, i just think that what paul ryan and what we are trying to do at the center, looking for a new source of innovation in helping people to become redeemed and restored, that
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innovation lies in the same community creating the problem. they are in the very toxic communities, people that we call ofial entrepreneurs entreprene% the american poor who are raising children in these toxic neighborhoods, are not dropping out of school, what is it they are doing that enables them to achieve against the odds that can be powerful lessons for their neighbors and for the rest of us and what we should be is aligning our policies to support these restoration efforts and that is what i think -- there is a source of new innovation. two quik phone calls and then i want to follow-up. do you think republicans would embrace what he is supporting? guest: they are already doing so. paul is a transformational verye and i think the
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effective robert rice, bill clinton's labor secretary, came out and supported well paul ryan is doing, which means there is a potential for trans-political remedies to this. i think the american public are seeking something non-polarized to bring us together to address a critical problem. $16 trillion spent over the last five decades. if you do that in the context of a $14 trillion a year economy, it is not that big a number. the number.ct when conservatives want to claim poverty is at the same level as it was in the 1960's, they use an archaic measure of property that excludes anti-property programs, including food stamps and programs with conservatives conservative
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support, like the earned income tax credit. if you use more accurate , poverty has gone down dramatically in the united states since the 1960's. the design on whether we have made progress is between the scholarly community on the right, left, and center, and politicians. conservative politicians have an incentive to say there has been no progress. liberal and progressive pundits and politicians do not want to say we have succeeded in reducing, at least a lot of the property. it -- a lot of the poverty. they want to say there is this crisis. most scholars believe poverty has been redeemed -- been reduced substantially. host: our guests at the table, michael lind.
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is the author of "land of promise." founderoodson is the and president for a neighborhood enterprise. let's go to bill, reading, pennsylvania. caller: good morning. let me make my point. please do not cut me off. it is very important to me. i came from europe when i was nine and a half years old. i had no problem. inot beat up six times school. i did not speaking much. i do not hold any grudges. it is what school life is about. i did spend two or three years in africa. the point is the government americanore for the
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people. the problem is we have to put these people to work instead of having more welfare. the welfare department has destroyed society. the streetside in and blow up people's property and stuff like that. that is a crime in my opinion. if you want to ride, you can ride peacefully get everything done peacefully. you do not have to go robbing stores and stuff like that. that is very bad. the idea is if we put all of these people on welfare and put them to work and they can live in a respectable way, we are all going to love each other. the white people gave these people the freedom. we did not bring them in america. there were slaves in africa. i was there. my nephew is over there. host: thank you for the call.
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guest: i do think our welfare policy has expanded exponentially and it has been destructive to people. this was the warning coming from the roosevelt administration. michael harrington talked about how it should be an ambulance system, never a transportation system. welfare is say that not necessarily related to downturns in the economy. increase in welfare participation occurred between 1965 and 1971 in the city of new york it went up about 500,000 to 1.6 million people and this was encouraged by the social activist. it was an attempt at -- when we
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began to see welfare, not as a social insurance or safety net, but as reparations following the riots, and let me quote from priven.- from mosts the young who are prominent in the disorder and that in turn is a critical force in producing revolution in the country. closeo on to say that the connection between work and well-being, the need for a common culture and the important of public order was to be cast aside as in adequate to the needs of blacks, there was to be a transfer of the responsibility from the family to the state and so we are living with a consequence of this policy shift because, as i pointed out, in
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the black community, even in after slavery, self-sufficiency explain why the black family did not deteriorate during the 10 years -- the ten ures of the great depression. we cannot not survive the 60's with policies being promoted that discourage work, that detached work from income and -- the whole black family began to disintegrate. that is part of this. host: chris is joining us. caller: good morning. -- to me, iplain believe the government on every level from federal, state, to local let the people down. the president say on vacation.
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the local government look like they were lost. another thing about ferguson. this is the first murder in 2014. ferguson do not have a high crime rate. it is not a high crime rate area. there are plenty of businesses. the houses over here are kept up. all everybody wants is the american dream, but the government has messed this up. now, the state patrol, we don't even think they're working together. we have elections coming up. you will see so much backlash fr and backstabbing. everybody wants the title and the money, but nobody wants the responsibility and accountability. i do not have much to add on.
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in connection with the earlier discussion of work, i think mr. woodson is right. the radical left wanted some sort of basic income. that was not the policy of the new deal liberals. franklin roosevelt abolished no strings attached well fair -- welfare. johnson, the centerpiece from his perspective of the war on poverty was the job score and volunteers in service to america. host: the washington post indicated the poverty level in is about 40%. does that sound right? caller: they are probably talking about in the impoverished area. even if there is, the people who -- the people do not
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have that mentality. you do not see kids hanging out in neighborhoods. there is no gang graffiti. they keep the houses up to code. they keep the archive and everything. not a poor mentality. that is when you do not believe in yourself. it has nothing to do with economics. my parents never let me know i was poor. i never had that mentality. was, liberalst and conservatives have agreed at making work central. the liberal approach has traditionally failed politically because of opposition from the right. unions,position from which would rather have well-paid unionized labor than low income people who do not
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belong to unions. the 1970's, and since welfare reform in the 1990's, the focus has been on using the tax code in the form of earned income tax credit to subsidize low-wage employment. that is where we are now. a lot of the debate about welfare is pre-1990's. the public has not quite caught up to the point of which there is an emphasis on work as a precondition for benefits. next -- host: my next call is from terry. caller: i heard there is more whites that do drugs them blacks, more whites that sell drugs to blacks, but there are more blacks locked up for. in the prison system, it is at least 40%. mass incarceration of blacks.
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the second point i would like to make is the one drugs should be over with. they passed the drug law and the murder rate doubled. -- just like the prohibition of alcohol, before they passed the law, there were no murderous alcohol banks. before they passed the drug law, there were no murderous drug gangs. they repealed the alcohol laws and broke up the murderous alcohol gangs. host: thank you for the call. put the facts on a, chris was right earlier. poverty and races not an excuse for violent or criminal behavior.
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the very fact is that in 1954, the black incarceration rate was comparable to the blacks in the -- to the number in the population. does anyone believe that race conditions have gotten worse or that poverty -- there something else going on. there has been a moral deregulation that has occurred by a lot of people that accompany a lot of these policies and programs that must be addressed. ferguson is a tragedy, but it is not a trend. there are only about 17 young blacks killed as a result of white police officers. 6000 are killed by other blacks every year. that is a 9/11 every six months.
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the fact that we are transfixed on the race act deflects attention away from the critical problem that represents a trend. there are 60 young black shot on fourth of july weekend in and civil rights leaders can come from chicago to ferguson? there is something in congress about that. unfortunate consequence you will find about ferguson is after this is over, you are going to witness why police officers -- they're are not going to enforce the law as aggressively with the consequence that you will see a real spike in the homicide rate in that community. it happened in cincinnati, ohio. none of the leaders of the movement are living in those communities at risk, nor do they have families and those communities. they can come in and fan the
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leave anddisorder and collect their speaking fees. the people in ferguson, on the block, chris, they are the ones were going to suffer the consequence of this disorder. host: 50 years since lyndon johnson traveled to appellation and promoted his great society program, including his push for income inequality -- income equality. here the table is robert woodson. lind.chael we will look at some of the scenes from 50 years ago as president johnson enjoyed -- toward appellation. caller: thank you for letting me call. give me some time. tidied twoe to issues -- i would like to tie
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the two issues of race and poverty together. i have had such experience with white young women who do not want to work, who have baby daddies. my ex daughter-in-law has three different children from three different fathers and today, is applying for welfare. my sondivorced from after 17 years. he took care of their two other children. they are all white. she wants unemployment and she has quit six jobs in the last two years because she is always a victim. we never talk about the whites. the ones who do not finish high school. she has two adult children. boys. they did not finish high school.
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they do not work. she doesn't work. you can only teach her children what you know. we do not talk about the white women. when i was young, white women on foodre, selling their stamps because we never talk about the whites. i am from michigan. we have a bunch of white people of north, on welfare for several different reasons, who are the i have everts talked to. we never talk about the whites. host: let's talk about it now. just thing the majority of poor people in the united states are non-hispanic whites. there are 8 million more nine hispanic -- non-hispanic whites who are poor than african-americans. even more than latinos. in terms of proportion, a smaller proportion of the white population is poor.
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, asbsolute numbers, today in the 1960's, a lot of the majority of the poor were white. they are disproportionately southern. today, as inmember south, in 1900, was as poor in relation to the rest of the country as russia was to great britain. the south has made great movement towards catching up, but since most african-americans are recent immigrants from the south to other parts of the country and there's a large in otherthern diaspora parts of the country as well, so the historice, intergenerational poverty is a reflection of southern economics and culture. it is not simply a reflection of public policy at a national level.
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host: give them good jobs, ones they can live on. guest: that is the challenge. back to my categories for the people whose character is intact. a job of work. people like the lady's daughters and i have a niece that falls into the same category. they need more. they need restoration. any transformation as a condition of it. need transportation as a condition of it. the very fact that a family of five would discourage their they from reading because were disqualified for a $600 ssi payment, there are quite a few inner-city moms that encourage their children to act out behaviorally so that they can go on medication, so they will qualify for ssi checks.
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there are a lot of perverse incentives that are contained in a lot of the government-funded programs and that we need to address. we need to do so with sensitivity, by providing alternatives, and that is why the center for neighborhood enterprise, we support thousands of grassroots leaders that are about the bits of helping people and restorer lives their lives in these communities. there is where we need support. host: you brought along this photograph. what does it tell us? tells us that even in slavery, black americans believe that their destiny was determined by what they do, their attitude about their own circumstance. that ifk scholar said person to enter
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in a backdoor event there is none, they will demand you build one. your destiny is determined by your actions and attitude. we must keep this in mind when we talk about the poor. quality-of-life issues, moral issues, character issues are as important as talking about income and work incentives. host: we welcome our listeners on c-span radio. 50 years after president lyndon johnson put forth his great society program. sarah is joining us from california. good morning. glad i got in. it is an interesting discussion. i want to ask your panel about subsidized housing, the failure of the government to provide enough hud and low income housing for seniors and families .
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when i was moving back to california, i told my son he would have to find me a subsidized housing unit because i was only getting $700 a month from social security. i am disabled. he went from san francisco all the way up the peninsula, over 200 miles, checking every unit. all of them had waiting lists from three to 10 years. one accidentally. he did not know was here, but the people who were on the waiting list could not move immediately and i could. that is how i got in. it is a very nice complex, but some many people i know -- but so many people i know have waited years and years. there is no way they can make it on the rents in california if they do not have helped. -- both parents
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work two jobs. could you address that issue? host: thank you for the call. we are going to spoke -- focus on the housing issue later this week. we have a bifurcated system. there has been subsidized gehett, which tends to o-ize a lot of poor people. we have shifted towards lowering reddit eligibility. credit eligibility. the problem the united states is going to faces with the cost of housing for the growing elderly population. right now, medicare does not cover long-term care.
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you have to spend down all of your assets to qualify for medicaid assistance. going to be shocked to the middle class when they realize this house, which is the major form of savings for most people, has to be sold to pay expensive private nursing home care, were alternately, -- where alternately, with respect to the elderly has not begun in this country. the program used to be fraught with fraud and abuse. about 150 black churches went bankrupt because of that. my friend has a model for what one church can do
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to provide. interventionok for that can be the foundation of new and innovative ways to care for the elderly. i would recommend your listeners seek that. i wanted to say to mr. first exposure was through c-span. you were in denver for the western conservative summit and i remember one of your comments was in terms of racism, that it tell racism was over when you blacksay that there is a and competent president and also
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-- when there is a black incompetent president and also that you did not want to go with senator lewis on the freedom that was what was then you think we should celebrate what is now. allowing thes racism to go unchecked, or what i believe the racism to be. i think we do have a difference in what racism is. i said racism is a problem, but it is not the most critical problem we face. i lost people in my immediate .amily a niece, raped and murdered at age 17. a nephew shot to death by a neighbor.
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two other nephews put into the intensive care unit. they were not shot by members of the clan or white -- of the klan or white police officers. they were shot by other blacks. problemto address this that is destroying lives and destroying families as a priority. 4800 not being done for -- blacks were lynched over the course of 40 years. we kill more of ourselves in one 40 years.killed over the question is not whether racism is still alive. the question is how much time and attention should we pay to it? there is an enemy within that must be addressed. host: toledo, ohio, calvin is next. caller: i'd like to talk about
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.he history moses killed the soldier who was beating the slave and foundd, the tribe that moses was an african tribe. married that king's daughter, which was african. beenf our history, we have people arelack nothing. to 1946 when they -- over.orld war ii was
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not allowed to have the g.i. bill when they first came out. host: that is not true, correct? guest: it is not. african americans were redlined and kept from getting some housing subsidies. mainly as a concession by liberals and the federal government to white racist -- and the self. the ability to build up household wealth. consequently, income inequality hasfrican-americans converged considerably. michael lind, the cofounder of the new american
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foundation and robert woodson, a founder and president of the center for neighborhood enterprise. echoing the prior caller 's sentiments, we look at the black classical cultures by -- you canty, where go to quantico and get the -- you see the veracity of this. the -- one fosters society. you see there are white people, you can go online to a site called real history, which shows looked.the minoans you can see these pictures that
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indicates the whole western culture being taught to our youth is a fraud. not just to our youth, but the world as a whole. we are in the midst of a that isized hegemony not being addressed and so our kids are growing up thinking they have never done anything and why kids are growing up thinking they have done everything. -- and white kids are growing up thinking they have done everything. we can talk contemporary history. there is a lot that black america does not know about their own history. -- whenense, we had blacks were denied access to hotels, we built our own hotels. the saint teresa in new york. the st. charles in chicago.
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when we were fired often thought foraltimore maryland striking, we did not march on washington. churches andr own capitalized and built our own railroads. we had a real estate company in harlem that had over 200 employees in the 1920's. black america has a rich tradition of self help. all of those centers of commercial activity went under within three years of urban renewal. in north carolina, they and 100d 100 businesses residential properties with the promise they would be rebuilt. they were never rebuilt. rather than tod,
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look at ancient history, our young people need to understand the history of self-help in america is an aggressive history and an exciting one. it is not -- and it fell apart. mr. woodson is very thoughtful and articulate person. he is genuine and speaks the truth, which can be painful. you want to respond? guest: i agree. val, savanna georgia? joe. caller: this has turned into a conversation more about race than lbj's society. i was a teenager and young adult in the 60's.
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i was working for the government. it worked. i sought work firsthand. my dad worked for -- he was a civil servant. he was overlooked for a job. he understood. he had to quit school to go to to keep fromccc starving when he was a young man. the gentleman was a man of his. what, these know folks have been held back way too long. reached if could be they were qualified for a job and they were overlooked, the hiring official had to go into deep explanation to explain why he overlooked that person. it was time for that to happen. it worked in the government. people had been overlooked for too long.
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leveling out. people started getting jobs the day after the act was signed. that started working. here's the problem in america. some people choose to be poor. i don't know if it is because the government has conditioned them that way or what, but right now, we have a major problem with jobs. can any of you name any legislation enacted in the last few years that would encourage a small business owner to start a business? you think the great society program has conditioned people to remain poor or too self-reliant on the government? in some cases, it has. people want to stay on the train and ride that train. they don't have someone to mentor them, to tell them that
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you need to pull yourself out of this mindset. you have to pull yourself up and get out of this thing. two months ago, thousands of kids across the country graduated. of those are gainfully employed today. guest: i think he is talking about -- it took moses a few weeks to get the israelites out of egypt, but 40 years to get egypt out of the israelites. that is the problem i comes to poor people, too. you have to understand your destiny is determined by your response to adversity. it isn't the absence of adversity that determines winners or losers.
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that is a fact of the matter. that should prevail in our policy approaches. poorermississippi is than massachusetts. it has been poor for forever. it is not because they choose to be poor. it is because one has a superior educational investment structure lets not blame individuals. there's no way you can explain the pattern of poverty as being primarily the result of individual choices. these are cultures and regions and classes. it is increasingly a class issue. the federal government shower small businesses with all sorts of aid. there are all kinds of subsidies.
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if anything, there is a built-in favoritism in favor of small businesses. a major complaint is the cost of benefits. support the ability of entrepreneurs to support small businesses, you should want benefits paid out of taxes so employers do not have any responsibility at all for the health care or retirement of their workers. it makes it easier to start a small business. that is the end of your obligation. l campo, texas. 'sgela, as we look at lbj great society. caller: i was listening to get somed i am able to
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information. it is just a suggestion on getting out information to people like myself and others. what to research on and things like that. host: where should people go for information? guest: you can come to center for neighborhood enterprise. we would be delighted to give you information we have. there is one book i would recommend and that is fred segal's book. "future once happened here."
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host: michael lind, we will conclude with you. they addressed people because of misfortune or a downturn needed income or needed in -- needed assistance. regions orome from backgrounds which have not prepared them to take advantage of the opportunities out there, they need supplementary help. provided on a local an individual basis. allow them to take advantage of the very considerable resources that the federal and state governments provide. host: -- gentlemen, thank you
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for being with us. we are going to continue our look at president johnson and his great society program. at the johnson library in texas, a look at his legacy and the words of president barack obama. video clip] >> there are those who look at government as the source of all that ails us and that poverty is due to the moral failings of those who suffer from it. argueare also those who that nothing has changed. that racism is so embedded in use to that there is no
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try and politics. that the game is rigged. such theories ignore history. it is true that despite laws like the civil rights act and the voting rights act, and medicare, the society is wrapped with division and poverty. race still colors our political and there have been programs that have fallen short. in a time when cynicism is easyd off as wisdom, it is to conclude there are limits to changes. our ownrapped by history. politics is a fools errand. --would be better off if 40 chunks of lbj's
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legacy or do not put too much of our hope, invest too much of our hope in our government. i reject such thinking. medicare -- use [applause] not just because medicare and medicaid have lifted millions from suffering, not because the property -- the poverty rate would be worse without food stamps and head start and all of .he programs that survive today i reject it because i have lived out the promise of lbj's efforts. washington journal continues. the full speech is available as part of c-span's video library.
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are going to continue our look back at lyndon johnson and his great society program. we want to turn to the voting rights act. is here.stin-hillery the brennan center is a think tank organization. approach multi pronged of trying to solve the problems of the government that we think need fixing. hans von spakovsky is joining us from boston. thank you for being with us. guest: thank you for having me. host: why was the voting rights act needed? in 1960 five, there was
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systematic, widespread official discrimination against black voters throughout the south. that was the fact that in places like georgia and mississippi, the registration rate and turnout rate of blacks low, in the teens, compared to white voters. guest: hans is correct, but african-americans were also living during a time of terror. not ---americans were were being victimized, tortured, killed for exercising the right to vote. the voting rights act was needed to ensure african-americans
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could enjoy this right like free of others encumbrances, like being subject toand being things like poll taxes and literacy tests. this is a website that looks at one of the supreme , shelby county versus eric holder. one of the issues is the idea of the id thata you need. is it restrictive? anst: the right to vote is inherent right. ton you're asking people askede an id, we have not individuals to produce an id.
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you have to produce information that verifies who you are. you have already met the challenge of identifying ourselves. one should not have to do that time and time again. hans, did you want to respond to that? that. i disagree with showing id to vote as a way to ensure integrity of the election process. lindo wing is not restrictive. a number of states, such as georgia, have photo id laws in place for many years. black voters did not go down and george are after the voter id law went into effect. it went up. that has been the case in almost all of the states that put in a photo id law.
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this is essential to maintaining the integrity of the election process. that is something fundamental to democracy. it is not a problem for americans. americans of all races believe this is a commonsense idea and there is not a problem with it. the concept that voters are doing things that are calling their integrity or the integrity of the system into question is false. the case inat pennsylvania, where they challenge the voter id law, when the commonwealth was asked to produce evidence, as one must produce in cases, to show there was problem with voter integrity, they were unable to do it. a reason the court did not uphold their law. we see it time and time again.
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we are not able to do so. we think the issue of voter id not a solution to the problem. host: you can see how much more restrictive it is in the south. guest: that is one of the reasons we have this piece of legislation where we are trying to improve upon the voting rights act. we know the problem of restrictive voting and discrimination and voting are not just focused on the south. that is what we were dealing with when the act was passed. other states, ohio, pennsylvania, wisconsin, they have made attempts to introduce
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legislation that would have the effect of making it harder for individuals registered to vote and we know we need a solution that ensures voters across the country are protected. host: you wrote about this and you have been focused on election laws. what has changed, if anything, under this administration or this attorney general? he is waging a war against integrity. voter id was upheld by the inted states supreme court 2008 as being constitutional and not being an unreasonable burden , anymore than people have to show id for things in everyday and to exercise other constitutional rights like getting married or if they want to purchase a gun under the second amendment.
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in case after case, the courts have upheld voter id and found it is not discriminatory. georgia was one of the key states covered. a lawsuit was filed after its voter id law was passed in the mid to thousands. the federal courts tossed out the case because they found it was not discriminatory. dialogue has been in place for six years. it has been shown not to be discriminatory. in the 2012 election, blacks outvoted whites by one percentage point in georgia with the voter id law in place.
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the voting rights act is therefore the attorney general to use on private property -- private parties to use. when someone engages in discrimination, those cases are few and far between in comparison to 1965. host: what is section five of the voting rights act, which has a history of minority getnfranchisement to federal approval to change voting procedures. in 2009, the supreme court allowed more bailout applications. is joining us from portland, oregon. in regards to lbj and the great society. that was one of the greatest pieces of legislation next to that which abraham lincoln.
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one thing that catches my you have people on from the heritage foundation. to speak freely and i do not want to insult or be demeaning, but it would seem to me that the republican party of today is the party of the clock -- of the klan and white supremacists of the country. they carry the same agenda. the only thing is, they are not killing black people in public like they used to. evil people ine the world. the heritage foundation is an offshoot of white supremacist. host: did you want to respond to that?
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guest: that is just ludicrous. the caller addresses personal insults rather than making -- where the heritage foundation is a conservative think tank. we believe in equal protection under the law. years as a career lawyer at the justice department enforcing the voting rights act and other laws to protect individuals from discrimination. we had an outstanding record of filing cases under the law to enforce those rights. the heritaget foundation is an offshoot of white supremacists -- that is foolish. caller: thank you for taking my call. this is an academic discussions course.
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it has no effect on elections. what does is gerrymandering. it is a handful of competitive races every year. of course you should have to have an id to vote. you ought to use this on how to segregate your listener line. takers andhave net that producers of tax revenue. producers of tax revenue. host: we will get a response. i agree gerrymandering is an issue that has to be dealt with, but let me follow-up on another thing the caller said. this concept that you need an id to vote, when people compare voting to doing other things like getting on an airplane, getting married, purchasing a
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weapon, these are different types of exercises of rights and privileges in this country. individual should not have to, and in no other instance do we ask people to produce identification to engage in our democracy. in no other part of the democracy do we ask individuals to do that. the idea that they must continue to do this in order to vote is not a good idea. it is something that makes it harder for people to vote. like hans will point out the number of african-americans engaged in the electoral process has increased. in many instances it has increased in spite of voter id. thattroduced a report sounded the alarm bell that alerted the country to all of the various legislative changes underway across the country that
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would have the effect of making it more difficult for people to register to vote. that provided an educational opportunity for americans all across the country to get a better understanding of what changes were taking place and what we understood and saw were people tried to educate voters about their rights and privileges with respects to these new laws. those of the reasons we saw more voters, the -- come to the polls. the brennan center and the heritage foundation represented at the table. janice is joining from louisiana. i grew up in the segregated south. i remember the literacy tests. the voting rights act was needed. in louisiana, you can
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go to the clerk of courts office and they will give you a voter id card. it is happening in louisiana. let me turn to hans von spakovsky for a response. every state that has put providedr id law has that if you do not already have one, you can get one for free. look at the report of the 2012 election. this does not prevent people from getting to the polls. that is the key thing. if i could address the gerrymandering issue, that is a problem. to remember that unfortunately, one of the bad effects of section 5 of the
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voting rights act, the one small , temporary provision the supreme court tossed out was that it made race the predominant factor required of states in the gerrymandering and redistricting situation. particularlyricts, in the south, were gerrymandered for racial reasons, something i believe americans believe is not the way we should do things. voters should be treated the same, regardless of the race. that kind of racial gerrymandering was going on in southern states and required to the u.s.tion 5 and justice department. host: market is joining us from only -- from indiana. -- john, apologize. caller: mrs. john.
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-- this is john. i am calling from st. petersburg, florida. i study history and theology for 45 years. is -- by the english and british. pay attention to history. you go through life with both eyes blind if you don't follow.
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s the disenfranchised republican voters more than democrats, the guy wouldn't push the agenda. >> the republicans wouldn't push all of these laws. >> steve, what's the agenda? caller: at the end of the day, the agenda is to reduce the number of younger and minority voters. >> that's the truth. host: let me take that point and get a response geft steve, i will say this: when we have looked at these voting laws throughout the country, we have been able to identify that in a majority of instances, these new
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laws are being introduced in states that are headed by republicans, and in legislatures that are headed by republican leadership. >> being said, this whole idea of laws being introduced to make it harder for individuals to vote, we think those are laws that are basically being pushed by certains politicians who want to ensure certain outcomes, but those may be -- i will leave it to the general public to determine, but we certainly believe these are not efforts to really make it easier for people to vote or to expand the franchise, which is what historically our democracy has been about. it has been expanding the franchise, not decreasing it. i have to go back to this to clarify something. you know, one of the callers mentioned, you know, that many states and mr. von sirkoski confirmed many are providing free voter id but in the states where it is not, it is still difficult for individuals to access that id.
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many times, individuals have to travel many miles to get this id. the hours may not be convenient for a lot of individuals who have to work, who can't get off of work. it is still not as simple as an individual going to the polls on election day and casting that their ballots. i want to bring this back to the voting rights act what we are here to talk about. as people talk about one of the things we can't ignore is the reason why we have so many successes in terms of how the franchise has been expanded for african-americans and why the number of african-americans and other minorities at the polls have increased. it's because of the protection that have been put in place by the voting rights act. it's because the voting rights act as has eninsured discrimination is not playing a role in how people get access to the ballot box. >> that's why these numbers have risen. it is for no other reason. and if we think the numbers won't change if this law, these same protections, are not in
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place, i think we are kidding ourselves. >> one of the points of this flu our viewers, he says there is no free voter id card. you have to pay to provide the identification needed to obtain that voter id card. your response? caller: well, my response is that the courts have all taken that into consideration. the majority of the courts have looked at that have said it's not an unreasonable burden on individuals. any different from the minor costs that people have to experience in order to transport themselves to the poll. look, there is not an issue with the voting rights act. the part of the act, section 2, which is the most important part, which prevents and bans racial discrimination in the voting context, that is a permanent provision. it is nationwide. so this idea that somehow, the voting rights act is going to go away, that's not going to happen. it is there. it can be used when in the rare
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instance that discrimination occurs, people can go to court and they can get remedies for the situation. but again, it's 2014. it is not 1965. we have a very free franchise today. people are able to register. they are able to vote and they are able to do it without being discriminated against and the turnout numbers demonstrate the truth of this, particularly, for example, in the states in the south that formally were covered under section 5 where the registration and turnout rates of black voters is not only on parity it's in some states higher, and as the supreme court pointed out, it's, in fact, better there than in other parts of the country that weren't covered under section 5. host: we take that point and ask you to look back 50 years ago as we see one of those iconic photographs of the johnson and standing behind him,
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refer end martin luther king. what was the debate? what centered the debate here in congress and in washington in the voting rights act in '64 and '65. >> what that debate was about was trying to make sure that african-americans particularly were not being kept from the voting booth. african-americans, as i mentioned at the start of the show, had been undergoing all kinds, myriad numbers of stacks that made it more difficult for them to access the ballot box. the short essence of the act was to ensure that race would not be a hindrance to an individual engaging in the democratic process and and participating and voting in this country. >> that's what the act does, pure and simple. i want to say this: the supreme court, you know, certainly noted that discrimination exists when it made its ruling in the shelby
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county decision. but one of the things that justice ginsburg said in her dissent, one of the reasons why so many americans, particularly african-american minorities and other minorities is as engaged in the voting process is because of the voting rights act. von spakovsky is correct in that. what we with are saying is that one of the most key provisions of that act that ensured that voters were protected before the fact, before voting changes went into effect that would discriminate against them, that has been invalidated. when you talk about section 2, as mr. von spakovsky said, yes, we have section 2 of the voting rights act. the problem with section 2 is two-fold. section 2 cases are extremely expensive and time-consuming to litigate. most individuals do not have access to those kinds of dollars and economic power and to
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lawyers to enable them to litigate those cases. but, number 2, section 2 is a provision of the voting rights act that one does not get to invoke until after the damage has been done, unlike under section 5 where a voting change had to come before the department of justice before it went into place. under section 2, you don't challenge a law until it has already gone into effect. and we all know that with respect to voting, you don't get a do-over. he elections take place on the day that they take place. once it happens, there may be other remedies in place to try to assist voters or to try to make voters whole again. but you can never give a voter another opportunity to recast that ballot. and that's the probably with only relying on section 2. >> today's conversation, the first in a series of conversations. tomorrow, we will look at the education initiatives by president johnson as we look back at the great society program that president johnson outlined in the spring of 1964.
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benjamin is joining us from springfield, massachusetts. good morning caller: benjamin. i was born in mississippi in 1933. i lived in massachusetts, in and out of massachusetts since 1950. interestingly enough, the heritage guest, i served behind the bridge. i was active in the '60s, the march on a washington, in georgia and mississippi and alabama dealing with voter registration and voters' rights when mr. johnson signed the voters' rights act, he said at that time that the democratic party would lose the south in the next 20 years. i suspect he underestimated t
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one of the things that i observed is the way the republicans had dealt with what has been described as a southern strategy, starting with mr. nixon and when ronald reagan announced his candidacy, he went to philadelphia and mississippi. he appealed to the bias instinct of southerners in order to get that support. the strategy being discussed thousand by the gentleman from the heritage foundation, if there was no -- if there was no need fore a voter's id before the voters rights act, there should not be one since. host: thank you for the call and prm for your own experiences. we will get a response. guest: let me say this.
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>> i am not quite sure the gentleman, the point he can trying to make. i could point out that massachusetts actually has worse problems in terms of differential. between black and white turn tout than states today like georgia and mississippi. in georgia and mississippi, you can check. you will find black turnout is on par with and often exceeds that of white voters. massachusetts has one of the worst records in the country. i think in the last election blacks voted at a lower rate by over 15%. so, you know, there is more of a problem, it seems, in massachusetts than those states. there are a higher number of black officials, the states covered by section 5 in proportion to population than rest of the country.
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conditions in those states that were bad in 1965 have improved to where they seem to be better, if you look at the numbers, than rest of the country. >> nicole austin-hillery guest geft i want to thank this kar caller for calling in and sharing experiences. i wanted to say two things. in many ways, mr. von spakovsky is making the arguments that i think those of us who support additional changes to the voting rights act are making. and that is this: he is pointing out that we have an increased number of african-american and minority voters that take place in the ch franchise, noting we have more minority elected officials in the states previously covered under section 5. one has to go a step beyond that and ask the question why? the reason why we have these various improvements, the reason why we have many more minorities have been elected to public office and many more minorities being engaged is the foundation
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we have laid through the massage of the voting rights act. it ensured minorities were not facing discrimination, that meant that minorities were accessing the ballot box, voting for individuals they wanted to see in office and becoming far more engaged. this is just make making the argument as to why these protection are so needed and why the protection that were previous in place before the shelby county decision are still needed and we actually need to advance those protection. then i want to go back to the voter id much issue and make something clear to our listeners, to our viewers: the problem with voter id is that not that voters are being asked to produce an identification. one-of the biggest problems is the. fication that individuals are being asked to produce. we are not saying an individual can show up at the voting booth and shows any kind of yidfication. i will sure most americans have something in their wallets and purses and brevior cases that
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says who they are, whether it be a utility bill, whether it be, you know, a notice that you received in the mail. we all have something that says who we are. but in most of these states that are requiring voter id, they are not saying that any piece of identification you have is acceptable. they are saying only a specific set of id is required on you what we found is many of these jurisdictions are requiring is the t identification that is far more difficult for the elderly, for young people, and for minorities to gain access to. >> that's one of the biggest problems with voter id. and i think we need to be clear on that. >> let me go to chris joining us from milwaukee. good sunday morning to you. caller: i am against the voter id because i am 71 years old. my husband is disabled. he had a stroke. esparcially paralyzed. we went to the motor vehicle department to get a picture,
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wisconsin id, and ended up getting turned away. since he cannot drive, they brought up his driver's license, which was taken away from him. guess what. his picture was not on there. they told him he needed a picture id to get a wisconsin id, which was actually the reason we were there. we had paperwork with us. none of it counted. we had a transit express picture id for him to take the disable bus, but that did not count. we ended up, after waiting 45 minutes going through this hassel, we had to go home. they wouldn't accept a social security card or anything. got more paperwork, waited another 45 minutes and then we
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did get one in the and the cost was $29. now, i know that under walker's bill, it will be free, but at what cost? there was a young woman when we were there that had to go back to ohio to get the proper paperwork. host: thanks very much for the call. mr. von spakovsky let me take her experiences and ask you just how much fraud do you think does take place as a result of the supreme court ruling requiring the voter ids? >> well, one of the things the supreme court said, particularly with this kind of voter fraud. when there is none in place it's hard to detect fraud. look, i wrote a book two years ago with my co-author john fine
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in which we detailed cases of fraud across country. in some instances, it affected the outcomes of election. this is just a basic method of insuring the integrity of the election process. the states that have id in place have set up all kinds of procedures is to help individuals get their ids. i wrote an article that was published about six months ago in which we took many of the individuals in the georgia lawsuit that had been filed unsuccessful this they said they would never be apparently get an i want d. we checked what had happened once the id law went in place. all of them, we hope found, in fact, had been voting regularly in elections. so they were able to get an id and able to vote. host: let me put that aside. if lyndon johnson were here
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told, would he be satisfied with his legacy on this issue? guest: i think given the decision the supreme court rendered, i don't think mr. johnson would be satisfied. i think he would be disturbed that the protection that were provided under section 5 of the voting rights act, that those protection are now no longer in place. i think that he would be concerned that without the basic protection that were provided under section 5, i think he would be concerned about how we would continue to protect minority voters from future discrimination without that key piece of the legislation in place. and let's be clear: there are still a number of voting discrimination instances that are taking place all across the
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country organizations like the brennan center, the leadership conference on civil rights have documented recent cases of discrimination that voters have faced since the shelby county decision. in fact, the brennan center issued a report that talked about what kinds of problems we could expect to face if the supreme court were to invalidate section 5 of the voting rights act. we are seeing examples in mississippi n texas and in other states across the country. if individuals go to our website and some of the other organizations i mentioned, you will see this documentation. i think mr. johnson would be very, very concerned about this increase, these increased numbers of discrimination that we're now saying after the invalidation of section 5 of the voting rights act. >> nicole austin-hillery is the counselor for the brennan center. von spakovsky is the senior
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fellow for the heritage foundation in the election reform and he is the co-author of who is counting how fraudsters and bureaucrats put your vote at risk. kerri is joining us from sea bring florida. welcome to the conversation. caller: good morning, c-span. i appreciate you taking my call. i am a republican, a proud conservative. i want to take issue with the first callers earlier today where she was -- she was dig gridating their republican party and the kkk and all of that. i would implore her to check to see in the south who was in charge of the kkk. and all those who were involved in that. and what political party they were at. host: nicole austin-hillery, do you want to respond guest: i don't have a response that like this caller, i think all of the callers should have an opportunity to express their
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views. >> that's what your show is here for. and, you know, i really don't have an opinion or want to take issue one way or the other. host: host: from international falls, minnesota, go ahead, sir. caller: i wanted to say t people can check, a higher percentage of republicans voted for those key civil rights act pieces of legislation than democrats did. so this idea that republicans are somehow against it was wrong. and if i could just say, look, you asked the question: would cylind lyndon b. johnson be concerned? i think he would be impressed is how successful the voting rights act has been. it's been immensely successful and i think he would have been surprised it took so long for section 5 to be overturned by the supreme court. let's not forget. in 1965, when whether lyndon
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johnson signed the voting rights act. section 5 was supposed to be a temporary emergency provision that was only supposed to last five years. it was supposed to be places like georgia and mississippi to be brought to the same standards as the rest of the country. what the supreme court recognized last year, in the shelby county decision, was that those states now were in the same -- met the same standards as the rest of the country and, in fact, were in better shape. so, there was no reason any more for the special treatment of these particular states that gave them extra scrutiny, they are now under the same non-discriminatory standards as the rest of the nation. and, again, that section 2, which prohibits all discrimination in the voting
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context. skwlrning the. >> let me go back to paul. caller: i want to ask the gentleman, if he is so concerned about the supreme court and their rulings, everything they rule against is the black, the working man is fine. they don't write -- willing for abortion or things like that or any voters' rights. i think they have a lot of the things about taking rights away from blacks. i don't understand their policy. thank god, i am not a republican and i never will be. geft mr. von spakovsky, did you want to respond to that? >> well, i think he is mistaken about the u.s. supreme court. in fact, if you look at this past term, he will find that in a very large number of cases, the court ruled unanimously 9 to oh, now, i think it's difficult to say when you have conservative and liberal
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justices on a court voting together that somehow the conservative just risz somehow acting in some manner intended to hurt people because of their race. >> that's not the case. i think that does a disservice to the justices of the court, all nine justices of the covered no matter whether they are considered generally conservative or liberal. host: this is from one of our viewers who says half of the eligible voters half. geft that's an interesting point. oftentimes when i talk about issues in this country, i will note, one of the things we all, regardless of what side of the aisle you stand on that we all should be focused on is we don't have enough people in this country who actually engage in the electoral process. our numbers are palletry in
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comparison. what we should be jointly focused on is trying to get more americans to engage in the voting process because we know that is the key way that we all exercise our voice. it is through that ballot box, and really, what we want is for every american, regardless of how they vote, whether they vote yellow, green, purple, blue, or red, we want them to engage in the process. >> is with a undergirds our democracy. then i want to talk about as this e-mail writer just mentioned, this issue of long lines. if we did have more people voting, yes, this issue of long lines would be a large one. the brennan center has a new report coming out about long lines and the commission that the president actually put in place after his state of the union address actually talked about this issue of long lines and they made recommendations in their report that talks about mechanisms that various states across the country could put in
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place to ensure that we are cutting down on and eventually eliminating the problem of long lines. we know this is something that's a deter event that makes it harder for people to become engaged, and it's a reason why many people don't want to be engaged in the process. so it is something that we want to deal with. we have some solutions for that a and the president's commission has some solutions for that. host: our final call from manchester, new hampshire. al e good morning. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. host: heur caller: your comments of a target-rich environment and the politics, first, from the previous caller, the kkk is a product of the democratic party, period. i find -- i find it offensive that you wouldn't acknowledge that. second, we have a representative republic, not a democracy. and my final thought, i find it
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offensive that you feel that minorities aren't smaurt enough to get an id to vote. there have been at least 17 cases convicted of voter fraud. tens of thousands of people voting in states. i know you are not going to acknowledge the fact i am speaking more to the american people about people like -- people with refuse to acknowledge the facts. host: thank you very much. we will give both guests a chance to respond. guest first of all to this caller, i would like to note my role here and our role at the brennan center is not to acknowledge or debate on the history of the kkk or other organizations. >> that's not my role. >> that's not my expertise. as i said, i respect all callers having their own viewpoint as i did with that caller who expressed her view. i will also say this: what i am here to represent and what the brennan center represents is an effort to ensure free, fair, and
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accessible engagement in our electoral process. >> that's what this conversation is about. we are not concerned about race, gender, ethnicity, economic positions of americans. we are concerned with all americans having access to the ballot box and being able to engage in our electoral process without any encumbrances that make it more difficult for them to engage in the process. voter id, we think, is one of those mechanisms as it now exists that makes it more difficult for americans to engage in the electoral process. >> that's a problem regardless with voter id or some other mechanism. anything that makes it harder for americans to engage in our democracy, we think is a problem, and that's what our research is about, and that's what we support efforts to again expand the franchise and not limit it. guest and with hans von
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spakovsky with a final word. guest: my final word is that, look. i also believe in and what we work on the heritage foundation is making sure that every american who is eligible to vote is able to vote, but, also that their vote is not stolen or diluted through fraudulent votes cast by indelible voters, phantom voters, et cetera. is that a problem? well, look, when the u.s. supreme court upheld indiana's photo id law, justice john paul stevens, a noted liberal on the court who wrote the majority opinion said unfortunately, the u.s. had a long history of voter fraud in this country and those are facts. >> that's something that we know to be true. i think the voting rights act which we are here to discuss today was a very important piece of legislation. it was immensely successful, which we should all be proud of that and the way the country has changed today. and while there still are isolated cases of
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discrimination, which can be remedied in the court, we should all be happy that, in fact, today, americans regard, regardless of color, have the franchise and are able to decide in the ballot box who they want representing us. host: in addition to the heritage website, how can folks follow you on this issue? guest: i write a lot at national review online. i am a regular contributor there and i have many articles published at nro about voting andly issues. host: nicole austin-hillery, how can people follow you? guest: the brennan center website best way to follow me. i along with my colleagues engage in intellectual writing on these issues. i would also urge your viewers to go to the leadership conference on civil rights website. the brennan center, along with several other voting rights organizations are working jointly to try to ensure